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The Communities Of Washington County

First Settlement | Addison | Alexander and Baring | Baileyville | Calais | Cherryfield
Columbia and Columbia Falls | Cutler | Deblois | Dennysville | East Machias
Eastport | Grand Lake Stream | Harrington | Jonesboro | Jonesport-Beals | Lubec
Machias | Machiasport | Milbridge | Princeton | Robbinston | Roque Bluffs
Steuben | Whitneyville

First Settlement

St. Croix Island, set about midway between the United States and Canada in the beautiful St. Croix River, was the scene of the first white settlement in the New World north of St. Augustine, Fla.

It was here, in 1604, that Samuel Champlain and his fellow French explorer, Sieur de Monts, led a band of about 100 soldiers and traders and spent the winter. It was from this island that Champlain explored the coast of New England as far south as Cape Cod.

After 35 of the settlers died during the winter, the group moved in 1605 to Nova Scotia. The island has been made a national monument.

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Some lover of the elegant English writer, Joseph Addison, famed for the harmony of his sentences and the easy flow of his polished language, must have named this town after him. The town was first settled in 1779 and now has a population of 1,135. The town itself is quaint but quaint you ain't seen until you take the road to South Addison (locals pronounce it "Edson") and unwind at Eastern Harbor. At the end of the dock there you can buy fresh lobster right off the boat and look at one of the prettiest little bays you ever saw.

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Alexander and Baring

The names of these two towns, one just north of Calais and the other seven miles out on Route 9, honor an Englishman, Alexander Baring, later known as Lord Ashburton. He was the son-in-law of William Gingham of Philadelphia, a landowner who had a million acres in Maine. As British ambassador to the United States, Ashburton, together with Daniel Webster who was American Secretary of State, settled the question of the northeastern boundary of Maine in 1842. Near Baring there are motels and restaurants at the end of the Airline. In Alexander there is a public boat landing on Pocomoonshine Lake and an excellent sporting camp.

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Baileyville (also Woodland)

Once known as Sprague Falls, this town of nearly 2,000 people is located ten miles north of Calais. Incorporated in 1828, the community grew almost overnight from a population of 215 when St. Croix Paper Company began construction of its paper mill in 1905. Now owned by Georgia-Pacific Corporation, the mill employs thousands of people from both sides of the international border. The town has a shopping center, some motels and cottages and restaurants. Just a few miles north of the town on the banks of the St. Croix River are a couple of boat launching sites. One is on the CC road three miles upriver and the other is at the Squirrel Point boat landing at the Lamb Farm about nine miles north.

According to local Maine guides, the best small mouth bass fishing in the world is found on the St. Croix River and in the flowed area north of the Grand Falls dam. The hardcore, dedicated fisherman can fill his limit easily with bass that come in around two to three pounds, and five-pounders are not unusual. White perch, the occasional landlocked salmon and Atlantic salmon and sunfish (brim) are to be found here also. During the month of June, when the alewives are making their spawning runs upriver, as many as 35 eagles have been seen at one time, swooping down to catch fish.

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The Border City of Calais

Located in the center of the lovely international St. Croix Valley, the city of Calais (pop. 4,100) is primarily a shopping center that draws from both sides of the boundary.

Serving 40,000 residents from eastern Washington County, Maine, and Charlotte County, N.B., the city boasts a wide variety of chain and independent stores, professional services, four banks and many motels and tourist homes. It is the largest community of 44 in all of Washington County. Calais is the sixth busiest port of entry into the United States on the Canadian border. A most remarkable and heart- warming relationship exists between Calais and its Canadian sister city, St. Stephen, N.B., just across the St. Croix River. Canadian and American holidays are mutually celebrated, nearly every organization has a mixed membership; Calais imports its very drinking water from Canada one of two places in the world where water is imported for this purpose; the Calais and St. Stephen, N.B., fire and police departments cooperate on every call for help.

Calais offers excellent schools, fine churches, a free library and a modern hospital. It is also the center of a hunting, fishing and summer recreational area. It was on St. Croix Island, located in the center of the St. Croix River in what is now Calais that Samuel Champlain established in 1604 the first white settlement in North America north of St. Augustine, Fla. But it wasn't until 1770 that Calais was permanently settled. On June 27, 1789, the township was granted to Waterman Thomas.

It was incorporated as a town on June 16, 1809, and a city charter was granted on August 24, 1850. The city comprises 19,393 acres and its Main Street extends 14 miles from the Milltown section of the city through Calais proper and downriver to Red Beach, also a part of the city.

Some of the outstanding attractions include:

  • The St. Croix Golf Club: a challenging nine-hole course which welcomes visitors.
  • The St. Croix Historical Society: maintains its headquarters in the oldest house in the city on Main Street. Visitors are welcome to explore the house which has been beautifully restored and furnished.
  • The International Festival in Calais, Maine, and St. Stephen, New Brunswick, Canada, is predicated on a history of international cooperation between the communities.
  • Begun on a shoestring budget in 1978, the Festival features the largest parade in Eastern Canada and one of the largest in New England. There are pageants, a beerfest, flea markets, church suppers, parades and a special Family Day.
  • Churches, women's groups and service clubs all take an active part in promoting a hands-across-the-border philosophy which could stand as an example for the world.

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Not known for its cherries but famous as the Blueberry Capital of the world, Cherryfield is also known by earnest anglers as the home of one of the best Atlantic Salmon fisheries on the east coast of this continent. The Narraguagus River is the spawning ground for salmon that go 20 pounds or better and are netted during the May to July run. There are two boat access ramps, a campground and lodging places. The Cherryfield Narraguagus Historical Society on Main Street is open during the summer Wednesdays and Saturdays from 1 to 4 p.m. There are many historic and very stately old homes which are well worth viewing. The town holds its annual July 4th celebration and parade in a 3-day event featuring a parade, fireworks and victuals.

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It was in the period following the Revolutionary War that the word "Columbia" came into use as a synonym for America. The name is derived from the explorer Christopher Columbus and it is an expression of poetic and idealistic sentiment popularized by the song "Hail Columbia", first sung in Philadelphia in 1798. The town of Columbia in Washington County received its name before the song became popular and thus expressed the patriotic sentiments of its early settlers. See the article about the Baseline in another section of this article. Columbia has an excellent restaurant and has one of the major shopping centers in the county located at the Four Corners. Columbia was incorporated in 1796 and has a population of 437 people.

Columbia Falls

Established in 1863, Columbia Falls has a population of 552. It was once part of the town of Columbia from 1796 until 1863 when the town of Columbia was divided and Columbia Falls came into existence. One of the first residents of what is now Columbia Falls was a man named Captain Thomas Ruggles who came to the town from Rochester, Mass., to the District of Maine in 1795. He was a prominent businessman who bought a large tract of land, acquired a saw mill and accumulated wealth. He became one of the great lumber barons of eastern Maine. The beautiful four-square mansion which he built in 1820 is still an object of admiration and is open to the public during the summer.

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Pronounced "Cut-lah", this town of 726 people is one of the prettiest in the whole of Maine. Take Route 191 at East Machias (Route 191 also goes north but you don't want that) and travel about a dozen miles to Cutler. You approach Cutler high on a hilltop and the beautifully protected harbor lies below you, the hills on either side shouldering any strong winds.

You can buy lobster, stay at a bed and breakfast, sit at the end of a wharf and see, smell, hear and feel all the harbor activity in the absolute jewel of a harbor. Capt. Andrew Patterson runs his passenger boat out of Cutler (Bold Coast Charter Co.), taking explorers on bird watching trips to Machias Seal Island, on sightseeing trips along a magnificent, island-strewn coastline, stopping here and there for picnics and beachcombing.

When you were driving along Route 191 you probably asked yourself what all those towers were for. Built in 1960, this U.S Navy base provides radio communication to all units of the U.S. fleet in the North Atlantic, Arctic and Europe. The towers range in height from 800 to 980 feet as tall as the Empire State Building. Cutler is blessed with some hiking trails that will leave you gasping at the awesome beauty of this magnificent coast-line. Here are a couple of places you can enjoy while clinging to discoloration’s on the rocks: at Western Head the Maine Coast Heritage Trust has created a hiking trail that takes you out to the head of the harbor on the western side. Four miles to the east of Cutler on Route 191 there is a hiking trail to the rocky cliffs which march toward Moose River in Trescott. Created and maintained by the Bureau of Public Lands, this is a marvelous hike for anyone who wants a challenge. Ask for directions in town because these trails are poorly marked.

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This is probably the only town in Washington County that was named after a banker. He was a guy named Thomas Amory Deblois who was president of the City Bank of Portland which at one time owned the town when there was no one living in it. The bank turned the town over to William Freeman of Cherryfield for development and in 1850 it was incorporated. There are a lot more hemlocks in Deblois than there are people. (44) but it is in the center of some prized blueberry land and excellent hunting an d the fishing in the Narraguagus and its tributaries is superb.

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Named after an Indian whose name was Denny, the river runs through the town of Dennysville. The original English settlers arrived on the river May 17, 1786 in the sloop "Sally" and had come Down East from Hingham, Mass. One of the first settlers was General Benjamin Lincoln. The Dennys River was famed worldwide for its Atlantic salmon fishing. The population of the town is 296.

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East Machias

The town's original settlers, many of them in the Foster family, founded the town in 1768 and erected a double sawmill 100 rods above where the fresh water of the East Machias River meets the salt water. There's a cute little picnic park right in town on the banks of the river and out to Gardner Lake there is a boat launching ramp and park for picnicking and swimming. Gardner Lake is famed for its landlocked salmon fishing.

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Settled in 1780, the city (possibly the smallest city in the nation) has a population of 1,928. In recent years an almost complete face-lifting and restoration has transformed the city into a fascinating place. Its main street parallels the water-front which has a delightful walking path so people can comfortably view the busy harbor. There are several excellent restaurants. There are two places to put a boat into the salt water where pollock and mackerel are the most likely fish to catch. Charter boats leave here for fishing and whale watching tours and there are several overnight accommodations. The big event of the year is the five-day celebration of the Fourth of July. It's from Eastport that the scow-type ferry goes to nearby Deer Island, N.B. There is a marine museum and an art gallery, both open in the summer.

Eastport was settled in 1780 and incorporated in 1798, changing its name from Freetown to Eastport. It included Lubec until 1811. The population reached its peak in 1900 with 5,311.

TREATS ISLAND: The island was originally settled by Col. John Allan, of Washington'5 staff, who ran a store here after the Revolution. His old account book is still in existence, showing transactions with the traitor Benedict Arnold, who lived for a short time at Campobello. His stay was cut short by his wife, the former Philadelphia belle, Peggy Shippen. Peggy wanted more action than Campobello provided.

This island then known as Allan's Island and its neighbor, then called Frederick's Island, were held by the British from 1814 to 1818.

The fort on the eastern side of this island, of which the breastworks and powder magazine remain, was built during the Civil War to repel Confederate raiders such as the "Alabama".

FORT SULLIVAN: A battery and a blockhouse were built here in 1810. The remains can be seen near the present high school. Fort Sullivan's big moment came on July 11, 1814, when a British fleet of a dozen warships of two hundred guns with troop transports hove into sight. Fort Sullivan with its six officers, 80 men and nine guns surrendered upon demand. Though there was no defense attempted against the odds, there was the satisfaction of knowing that England had sent its best against them for the British fleet was under the command of Sir Thomas Hardy, who commanded the "victory" at Trafalgar, taking over when Lord Nelson was mortally wounded. Sir Thomas made the Buckman House his residence. The fort and town were given up in 1814.

There is an old breastworks. at Todd's Head near where the Deer Island car ferry lands. Eastport's first and major appearance in the county's affairs occurred in 1814 when the Commissioners of Peace of Great Britain and the United States, sitting in Ghent, Holland, had nearly reached a final agreement. Word arrived that the British had seized Moose Island (Eastport).

This deterred the Treaty of Peace for nearly six months giving Packenham time to sail, be defeated and killed by Andrew Jackson at the Battle of New Orleans on January 8,1815. The victory of New Orleans made Jackson's name a household one in America and probably had a major part in his election to the presidency.

Eastport, in 1818, was returned to the United States by the peace settlement.

The city of Eastport, which once boasted 14 sardine canneries, is gathering its economic strength from aquaculture, tourism and developing its deep water port. Ships from around the world take on cargoes of kraft and long logs.

Eastport is full of beautiful colonial architecture, shaded streets and gorgeous views of the Canadian islands.

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The town of Edmunds is located between Whiting and Dennysville on Route 1 but don't look for any signs of settlement. About three miles from Dennysville there is a road off to your left (if you are headed toward Machias). Here you will find placed strategically around 864 acres; 101 camp and trailer sites; 41 picnic sites, 44 latrines, adequate drinking water at 22 outlets and a boat launching area with ramp.

Formerly developed as a part of the Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge, the recreation area is managed under a cooperative agreement by the Cobscook Bay State Park.

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Grand Lake Stream

This town of 198 is on the southern end of West Grand Lake, one of the biggest lakes in Maine which enters into many more lakes on its northern and western extremities. The town is 10 miles off Route 1 and the road is just over two miles north of Princeton. It's set in the heart of a wilderness area and offers a variety of recreational opportunities. You can put your boat in here, swim here and at Little Falls, on the road to Big Lake, there is a superb spot for picnicking, fishing, swimming or camping. Six miles past Grand Lake Stream the state operates a free camping facility on Pocumcus Lake at Elsemore's Landing. There are many excellent commercial camps which cater to both sportsmen and family groups.

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Settled in 1765, the quiet village of Harrington has the distinction of having more wooden ship tonnage constructed per capita than any other place in the world during the late 1800's. It is the home of the Harrington Family Health Center, some fine camping sites and a bed and breakfast. A ride down to Ripley Neck is well worth the time. There is also a very fine marine sales and service business in town. In the early eighteenth century, when David Dunbar was the surveyor of the King's woods and had been given all the land in Sagadahoc County, he laid out the territory between the Sheepscot and Muscongus to which he affixed three names of English noblemen and writers: Townshend (now Boothbay); Harrington (now Bristol) and Walpole (now Nobleboro and part of Bristol). Later when the name of Harrington was no longer in use for the present town of Bristol, it was bestowed for a period of four months upon Augusta, Maine's present capital. When the name was discarded by the inhabitants of that town, it was selected for Maine's 113th town, the present Harrington here in Washington County.

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This small town on Route One, population 583, has the Chandler River flowing through the middle of town. It also has a good-sized campground with a swimming pool, a modern motel plus eight cabins, a restaurant with real home cooking and a seasonal bed and breakfast lodge. The Hannah Weston grave site is located on top of Weston Hill. The town was named after John Coffin Jones who got one of the best deals in town. He lost a sloop which formed part of the fleet sent against Castine during the Revolution. For repayment he was granted a total of 48,160 acres stretching from what is now Buck's Harbor to Jonesboro and including Roque Bluffs. Hannah, incidentally, and her sister carried desperately needed powder and lead to the patriots of Machias for the capture of the British warship the "Margaretta".

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This area of the county with its scores of lobster boats riding in the harbors and coves is most picturesque. There are views wherever you look and there are friendly people wherever you turn. This, of course, is the birthplace of the "Jonesport" style hull used all along the coast, famed for the ease with which it comes into the wind, rides the swells and tosses off the bow waves. You can reach Jonesport-Beals by taking Route 187 either from Jonesboro or Columbia Falls. Here you can beachcomb, get fresh lobsters, camp out at Kelley's Point; charter Capt. Barna Norton's boats; launch your boat into Mossabec Reach; dig clams (get a non-resident license at the town office); find excellent accommodations; and a couple of good restaurants. A week-long celebration of the Fourth of July takes place every year complete with the fastest lobster boat races in the harbor.

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Lubec, The Beginning of America

Awaken to the dawn's earliest light in the eastemmost town in the United States. Lubec's rural charm awaits you as you explore its 96 miles of undeveloped coastline. Floating offshore salmon pens reflect an emerging aquaculture business. Lubec's long tradition as a fishing village can be explored at the Old Sardine Village Museum.

West Quoddy Head Lighthouse overlooks Sail Rock, the eastemmost point of land in the United States. The adjoining 483-acre state park offers hiking trails along the bold Atlantic coast, picnic areas and exciting views of Campobello and Grand Manan islands, Canada. Opportunities abound to view whales and pelagic birds, as well as to explore Arctic tundra with its rare insectivorous pitcher and sundew plants on trails that lead through a coastal raised plateau bog to a tombollo unique in the United States.

Adjacent to the park, the West Quoddy Head Marine Research Center devotes itself to research and education in studies of marine mammals and the natural environment. The Center welcomes you to its Visitors' Information Center and offers continuing courses, "Nature Studies for the Bay of Fundy", which are also open to the general public.

Accommodations include a motel with an adjacent airstrip and a number of fine bed and breakfasts, as well as campgrounds. Boat tours of the islands, birds and whales are available leaving from the municipal dock with its public boat ramp. Enjoy trading at village stores and dining in your choice of restaurants.

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Machias, The Shiretown Down East

The county seat is Machias, a country town whose white houses and shops line the Machias River and the salt water bay into which the river tumbles over rugged ledges.

The second largest community in the county, the town is the home of the University of Maine at Machias. From the town many of the places described in this directory can easily be reached.

Fresh water swimming, boating and fishing can be found within a short distance of Machias in Hadley, Gardner or Six Mile Lakes (see Inland Sports Fishing section).

You can dig clams, go wading in the ocean, beachcomb or look for Indian artifacts by taking the roads to Machiasport, Bucks Harbor, Starboard, Roque Bluffs or Cutler.

On Route 1 in Machias is a public boat landing which provides access to the Machias River and salt water.

Amateur historians will be interested to know that just below Machiasport are the remains of Fort O'Brien, built to protect the approaches to the Machias River during the Revolutionary War.

It was at Machias that the very first naval battle of the Revolutionary War took place. This was a land and sea action which resulted in the British schooner "Margaretta" being captured by American residents with the loss of only one man on the American side.

The captain of the British craft died that night in the Burnham Tavern, a well preserved example of a colonial inn. The Tavern is the oldest building east of Bangor - it's maintained by the local D.A.R. and is open to visitors.

Machias was successfully settled in 1763 and has a population of 2,458. The town has an excellent boat launching ramp, a 2,900-foot bituminous runway with lights and fuel at the Machias Valley Airport, many fine dining places, a laundromat and several top-notch overnight accommodations. Machias and its nearby communities mark the Fourth of July but the major event of the summer is a three-day Blueberry Festival which this year will be held August 18, 19 and 20. The 23rd Annual Crafts Festival will be held August 19 (see Coming Events).

The Downeast Summer Art Gallery is open daily from mid-July to mid-September featuring local artists and craftsmen's displays. The Ferris Wheel Emporium is a structure enclosing more than 30 fascinating shops. Machias would be an excellent place to use as your headquarters while exploring the lake country and coastal villages nearby.

The Blueberry Festival sponsored by the church is held each year during the third week of August. The affair begins on Friday with a Fish Fry, Children's Parade and a Musical Comedy. Other events the next day include a blueberry pancake breakfast, 5 Mile Run, and Craft Fair.

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This community, back in shipbuilding and sardine canning days, was the major port in the area and it includes the towns of Larrabee, Buck's Harbor and Starboard. It was incorporated in 1826. To get there take Route 92 out of Machias (at the base of the college campus hill). Machiasport itself is built on a hill and offers spectacular views of Machias Bay. You'll come to Fort O'Brien State Park. This is where the first naval battle of the Revolution was fought between the British schooner "Margaretta" and the victorious sloop "Unity". The Gates House Museum is open to the public in summer.
  • BUCK'S HARBOR is a colorful fishing village, and it's home port for about 60 fishing boats. A few moorings are available for visiting mariners and gasoline and diesel fuel may be obtained at the Buck's Harbor Cooperative dock where you can also get the freshest of lobsters.
  • JASPER BEACH (described elsewhere in this book) is a couple of miles past Buck's Harbor. It's distinguished from other gravel beaches by a half-mile long barrier spit fronting a tidal inlet. Wave-polished pebbles of jasper and rhyolite give it a distinctive color. A large sign marks this 11-acre park.
  • STARBOARD offers stunning views of islands and there's a nice beach to explore and picnic on. It's about as close as you're going to get to Spain.

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This community of 1,300 is located at the head of Narraguagus Bay. Neat, friendly - all the towns are friendly - and graced with some architecturally beautiful old homes, Milbridge is the trade center for western Washington County. It's also home for an active sardine cannery, a major Christmas wreath factory as well as an administrative center for a major part of Maine's blueberry industry. There is a boat launching ramp and a dock, campgrounds, private charters, excellent restaurants, salt and fresh water fishing, many lodging places and a theater. The last weekend in July brings the annual Milbridge Anniversary Celebration which features a parade, dance, crafts, exhibits, a lobster and clam bake and cod fish races. The town of Milbridge has a brand new historical museum of local history. You will find the museum Open Tues, Sat and Sundays during the summer from 1 to 4 pm. While in the village of Milbridge, visit McClellan Park which offers a fantastic picnic and camping area right by ocean. On Narraguagus Bay at Milbridge: Tenting and picnic sites in separate areas have been constructed on this beautiful bluff overlooking Narraguagus Bay. On ten-acre MeLellan Park there is also ample parking space and hiking trails as well as a service building which contains modern sanitary facilities and fresh water obtained from a new artesian well. The park is about three miles from Milbridge on a back road.

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Named for Pembroke, Wales, from which came the crude salt which was refined as table salt in the salt works of this town, Pembroke was first settled in 1774 and now has a population of 920. The Reversing Falls (described elsewhere) are located here at the end of Leighton's Neck. The town has several motels, a couple of fine restaurants and celebrates the Fourth of July.

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When the town was incorporated in 1818 it was named for Commodore Oliver H. Perry who, as commander of a squadron in 1813, had defeated the British on Lake Erie. He’s the one who sent this dispatch to his superior: "We have bet the enemy and they are ours…". Perry has a Harvest Fair in September which features crafts and food sales. This is the halfway point between the Equator and the North Pole.

There is a campground in town and at Gleason's Cove you will find a boat launching ramp, a beautiful beach and a fine place to picnic. There's fresh water fishing at Boyden's Lake where there is a public boat landing. There are two stores and a fine restaurant with home cooking, together with two gift shops.

If you stick to Route 1 in Perry you'll see nothing much more than woods but if you take the shore road, so-called, you'll be able to get wonderful panoramic views of Passamaquoddy Bay, the Canadian Islands and mainland. Within a few minutes' drive of Perry are Boyden's Lake, Pennamaquan Lake and Round Pond, good for fishing, swimming and boating.

Alongside Route 1 in Perry is a red granite stone marking the exact halfway point between the Equator and North Pole. Interestingly enough, the 45th parallel also crosses through southern France, Turkey, Mongolia, China, northern Japan, Canada.

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Ebeneezer Rolfe, the third settler in what is now Princeton, asked that the town be named after his home in Massachusetts and it was. It should have been named Bonneyville after the first settler, Moses Bonney, for he built the first house in that part of town known as South Princeton. Anyway, Princeton has a population of 994 and is the gateway to thousands of acres of lakes and ponds, numerous trout streams (all of them called Bear Brook) and hundreds of thousands of acres of forest where hunters go after birds, ducks, bear, moose and deer.

There's a boat launching facility right in town into Lewey's Lake. From there you can enter into Long Lake and then Big Lake for some of the best small mouth bass fishing in the world. Go east from the landing and you can explore and fish a huge flowed area and eventually end up in the St. Croix River. There are some great sporting camps located in this area, some overnight accommodations and restaurants.

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Roque Bluffs

Want to turn the kids loose for a delightful afternoon or take a stroll yourself on a beautiful beach? Just west of Machias is the Roque Bluffs road and the beach is six miles from Machias. There you will find a tiny community (pop. 244) where summer people and fishermen live side by side. You will also find Roque Bluffs State Park which features a fresh water pond behind a 900-yard-long sandy beach. There are rest rooms, a children's playground, dressing rooms, picnic tables and grills and it is open during the daylight hours all summer long. A voluntary fee of one dollar per person is requested. A sign gives the rules. Great Cove Golf Course is three and a half miles towards Jonesboro. A Scotsman named Schoppe came here in 1776, leaving Burgoyne's army and enlisting instead in the American effort. The town was a part of Jonesboro until 1891 when the towns-people voted to become a separate town. It was H.P. Gardner of Boston, owner of nearby Gardner's Island, that asked that the town be named Roque Bluffs.

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The tiny village of Robbinston, once a major ship-building center, clings to the shores of the St. Croix River just where it widens to become Passamaquoddy Bay. Here the bright red volcanic sand is in great evidence. Inland, at Boyden's Lake and at Western Lake the town of Robbinston has provided access roads and boat launching ramps open to the public. Here you can picnic, Swim and fish. A splendid six-acre picnic area and boat launching ramp are situated on Route One at the point where the St. Croix River and Passamaquoddy Bay meet. This area was settled in 1786 but Robbinston actually became a town in 1811. A large tract of land was granted to Edward H. Robbins and Nathaniel J. Robbins of Milton, Mass. on October 21, 1786, and it was from these proprietors that the town took its name.

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It's the westernmost town in the eastemmost county of the United States. It was settled in 1760, has a population of 1,000 and is located on the coast. In fact, it's nearly surrounded by water on the east is the Narraguagus River and Bay, on the south, the ocean and on the west, Gouldsboro Bay and Steuben Harbor. There's a campground and boat launching ramp in Steuben Harbor. It was named after Baron Von Steuben, a German officer who so nobly aided our Revolutionary struggle by whipping our untrained, hungry and half-clad troops into a victorious army while they were suffering at Valley Forge. Out on Petit Manan Point at the end of the Pigeon Hill road you'll find the Petit Manan Refuge - a great place for birders.

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This is one of the smaller towns in the county with only 264 residents. It's on Route lA out of Jonesboro and is situated on the banks of the Machias River. It was on this river for decades that the largest long log drive in the east was conducted and all the logs ended up at the lumber mill in Whitneyville - some five million board feet. The long log drive is history and now the town is the terminus for many canoe trips that start 30 miles or more away on the Machias River.

Whitneyville, Maine is celebrating its 150th anniversary on July 1 and 2. There will be a display of old and new wood harvesting equipment and techniques, with a logging team from the University of Maine putting on demonstrations. A film of the long log drive will be shown. At noon on July 1st a real log drivers’ dinner will be served to the public and on Sunday, July 2, a rededication and historical church service will be conducted at 6:30 p.m.

Whitneyville was named after its founder, Colonel Joseph Whitney, and enterprising man who built a large dam across the main river and erected saw mills, grist and lath mills, piers and booms. It was first settled in 1845. Washington County Maine - Washington County - A Look At Downeast Maine

A Little Washington County History - At Machias the first naval battle of the Revolutionary War was fought - a land and sea action which resulted in the British schooner "Margaretta" being captured by the American residents with the loss of only one man on the American side. The captain of the British craft died that night in the Burnham Tavern, a well-preserved example of a colonial inn now open to visitors. The oldest building east of Bangor, it's maintained by the local D.A.R.

Everyone Loves Blueberries - Washington County, responsible for more than 90 percent of the nation's blueberry crop, is the world's largest producer. The glacially formed "barrens", vast rolling plains of sandy soil, are perfect for raising wild, lowbush blueberries. Thus, the growing, harvesting and processing of the blueberry is a major industry in Washington County. Nearly a quarter million acres of barrens yield an average of 30 million pounds of blueberries annually, all of which are canned within the county.

Sport Hunting in Washington County - The face of this land is a succession of valleys with ridges between, stretching from the Narraguagus to the St. Croix and beyond. The rivers that drain the valleys are born of spring-fed lakes and ponds that lie embossed in the highlands to the north, hidden away in the forests of pine and spruce, of balsam fir and hemlock. These are the haunts of the whitetail deer, the black bear and the moose, and this is the land where they are sought by the hundreds of hunters who venture forth come fall.

Native American Indian History - Although the earliest European settlers found Indians of the great Algonquin stock throughout Maine, evidence unearthed and correlated in the last fifty years has firmly established the belief that these Algonquin tribes had been preceded by an earlier, different group of men who are called Pre-Algonquin or Red Paint People. Red Paint People have been so named because each of their ancient graves contains from less than two quarts to a bushel of brilliant ocher, usually red but occasionally yellow or brown. The burial with the bodies of ocher (a mineral from which paint may be made) and stone implements, which are unlike Indian implements, distinguishes these people.

Natural Wonders - TIDES: The greatest rise and fall of tides on the shores of the continental United States occur along the Washington County coast. The tall pilings at Jonesport, Lubec and Eastport attest to the gigantic fluctuations of the ocean's level where 18-foot variations are average. Actually, the greatest tides occur way up the St. Croix River at Calais where the average is 20 feet. At certain times of the year, however, the water level will vary 28 feet every six hours or close to one inch every minute!

Beaches And Tidal Pools - No visit to Washington County would be complete without the thrill of discovering the beauty of the beaches and rocky cliffs that form the boundary between the pounding sea and the land. This narrow band between the low and high water mark is a world of its own populated with plant and animal life peculiarly adapted to living part of each day submerged by the ocean water and the rest of the time exposed to the drying sun and wind. The scene is an ever changing one as each tide slowly rearranges the pattern of the rocks, the sand and the residue from the sea.

Campobello Island - Campobello Island, N.B. is nine miles long and about three miles wide. It has two fishing villages, Welshpool and Wilson's Beach, both of them home port to many colorful vessels which go out many miles to catch fish. After you go through customs and get a friendly nod you'll climb a hill. When you get to the top, stop and turn around so you can take in the view of Lubec, Maine across the "Narrows", where, according to the U.S. Coast and Geodetic Survey, the strongest tidal currents on the east coast flow --around 12 knots or 15 miles an hour.

Ten Exciting Places To Enjoy Yourself Absolutely Free - There are several excellent facilities in Washington County which are open to the public at no charge. All that is asked is that visitors leave the areas clean and unspoiled. Depending on the location of the site, provisions have been made so that people of all ages may enjoy picnicking, tenting, boat launching ramps, fishing, hiking and swimming.

Moosehorn Wildlife Refuge - The Moosehorn National Wildlife Refuge, an area comprising 28,686 acres, was established in 1937 for the protection, study, perpetuation and management of certain species of wildlife, particularly waterfowl and other migratory birds, in the area. Moosehorn is the only one of more than 540 national wildlife refuges that is devoted to the study and management of the American woodcock.

Five Great Places To Hike - If you're looking for some interesting hiking trails, you've come to the right place. Here are five locations you might want to try some of these.

Washington County Wildflowers - From the time the first Mayflower blooms between the patches of melting snow on the sunny hillsides until late in the fall the great natural lands of Washington County are filled with hundreds of varieties of wild flowers and greens. Plants have structures and abilities which suit them for living in particular environments and therefore each distinct area of seashore, woods, fields and roadsides brings forth its own individual bouquet.

Points Of Interest - When the phrase Down East came into common usage is unknown but some historians feel the description goes into the early 1600's. It is rather a puzzling phrase but as you can see from examining a map, the coast of Maine does go east but, at the same time, it runs northward too, or up. However, what early explorers quickly found out was that the prevailing winds blew from the southwest, as they do today. Therefore, they most frequently sailed with, or down the wind, as they moved to the eastward. Thence, Down East.

The Glaciers Did It - A million or more years ago the world grew very cold. Great sheets of ice formed over the northern lands, retreated, grew again, drew back and for the third time advanced far south of what is now Maine. As recently as 15,000 years ago there were tongues of the huge glaciers extending into Washington County.

The Communities Of Washington County - St. Croix Island, set about midway between the United States and Canada in the beautiful St. Croix River, was the scene of the first white settlement in the New World north of St. Augustine, Fla. It was here, in 1604, that Samuel Champlain and his fellow French explorer, Sieur de Monts, led a band of about 100 soldiers and traders and spent the winter. It was from this island that Champlain explored the coast of New England as far south as Cape Cod.

Boat Launch Sites - Washington County has some pretty good boat launching ramps on lakes and the salt water. Here is a fairly complete list of the fresh water launching sites.

Salt Water Fishing - A salt water sports fisherman, to borrow author Kenneth Roberts' words; "has always with him the clean, salt tang of the sea, the roar of waves on the ledges, the fatalistic scrutiny of clownish seagulls and is never annoyed by mosquitoes, black flies, midges or horseflies." A description which should knock fresh water fishing into a cocked hat, but won't. Nevertheless, salt water fishing in the county can offer every member of the family some wonderful thrills whether you cast from a ledge or wharf or dangle a line from one of the charter boats that ply from Red Beach, Jonesport, Cutler or Eastport. The fish to be caught include flounder, sculpin, cod, pollock, smelt, mackerel, halibut, sea bass or "stripers" and tuna, although tuna are very rare. In fishing for flounders, we notice that the most successful fishermen use worms, either the garden or sand variety; this keeps the bait from being eaten by the sculpins.

State Parks - Washington County offers several nice public parks including the ones listed on this page.

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